Director of Learning: Miss R Long
At Poynton High School we believe that RS has something to offer every student. All students study RS until at least the end of Year 11 and some go on to study RS related degrees at university or to embark on RS linked careers such as medicine, law, military social and care work, etc. Our RS curriculum is designed to prepare our learners to understand and appreciate the world around them. It is our aim to ensure our young people can navigate a changing world with the knowledge, skills and curiosity that prepares them for lifelong learning and future employment.
Through high quality teaching and learning our intent is that the RS curriculum will allow students to:
- Develop a love of RS and learning
- Access a broad and ambitious curriculum covering a wide variety of ethical and philosophical principles and concepts
- Consolidate knowledge and understanding to build upon prior learning
- Develop an insightful level of questioning and understanding which enables learners to investigate and reflect upon the world in which they live
- Appreciate the importance of RS in everyday life and apply their knowledge to familiar and unfamiliar circumstances
- Accurately read, interpret and analyse a variety of different ethical viewpoints and synthase moral conclusions
- Giving learners the necessary tools and understanding to engage with a variety of ethical issues and formulate their own unique moral judgments
- Fully contribute to learners spiritual, moral, social and cultural development regularly
- We ensure all learners have a safe and secure environment through which to better reflect and empathise on the importance of diversity and inclusion
- Be prepared for life in an ever-changing world in order to positively contribute and respect the contributions of all others
- Understand the links between RS and other subjects such as History, Sociology, Psychology and English.
Religious Studies is taught by a department of qualified specialists to all students, from Years 7 to 11. The locally agreed Cheshire East syllabus for RE is followed. All students will take GCSE Religious Studies as we regard this subject as so important for the development of students' wider understanding of the world.
The RS Department
Director of Learning: Welfare Education (PSHCE and RS)
Miss R Long
Key Stage 3 Co-ordinator
Mr M Shaw
Teachers of RS
Mrs C Hardicre
Mr S Keifer
Miss S O'Loughlin
KS3 & KS4 subject information
Religious Studies is taught across all key stages by a dedicated team of specialist staff. RS gives students the opportunity to explore the role and significance of religion in society and the important beliefs and values that shape the world today. RS helps students understand the religious experience of others and the ways in which it gives adherents a sense of purpose and meaning in their lives.
RS is an important subject in itself, developing students' knowledge and understanding of the religions and beliefs which form part of contemporary society. RS provokes challenging questions about the ultimate meaning and purpose of life, beliefs about God, the self and the nature of reality, issues of right and wrong, and what it means to be human. It develops students' knowledge and understanding of religions and other worldviews that offer answers to questions such as these. RS also contributes to students' personal development and well-being and to community cohesion by promoting mutual respect and tolerance in a diverse society. RS also makes an important contribution to other parts of the school curriculum such as citizenship, personal, social, health and economic education (PSHCE education), the humanities, education for sustainable development and others. It offers opportunities for personal reflection and spiritual development, deepening understanding of the significance of religion in the lives of others - individually, communally and cross-culturally.
Key Stage 3 (Years 7-9)
In Year 7 students have 2 hours of RS per timetable cycle and are usually taught in form tutor classes. In Years 8 and 9, students have 2 hours of RS per timetable cycle in mixed ability classes.
In Year 7 students start the course with a topic called 'Search for Meaning'. In this, they look at big questions of life, why are we here? How did the world begin? Why do people suffer? Students go on to explore key aspects in the final stages of Jesus' life, looking at the death and resurrection of Jesus. In summer term students learn about 'Special places' comparing different places of worship.
As part of the RS Year 8 curriculum, students study aspects of Jewish life focusing on Jewish beliefs, festivals and practices. In addition to this, students learn about Life and Beyond, looking at religious and secular beliefs about birth and death. As part of this topic visitors from local churches come into RS lessons to share their beliefs with students. Students study thematic topics such as Religion, Art and Culture, which includes looking at meaning and symbolism in music, film, literature and art.
The Year 9 curriculum tackles deeper questions of life and prepares students for their forthcoming GCSE course. Students study aspects of Philosophy, looking at arguments for the existence of God and the problem of evil and ethical issues such as war and capital punishment. Students learn about the Buddhist faith and which links into their GCSE course.
Key Stage 4 (Years 10-11)
All students study a compulsory full course GCSE in RS which is taught over 4 hours per timetable cycle and is assessed by 2 exams at the end of Year 11.
Students study the following topics:
- Buddhism - The Dharma, the Buddha, the Four Noble Truths, worship and festivals
- Christianity - worship and festivals, key beliefs, Christ and salvation
- Role of the church in the local and wider community
- Crime and punishment
- Religion and life
- Human rights and social justice
- Relationships and families
- Peace and conflict
Key Stage 5 (Sixth Form)
At A level the study of RS continues to be a highly successful option for many students. Students follow aspects of Ethics and Philosophy in greater detail, building on the ethical foundations set by the GCSE course.
Religion and Ethics looks at different ethical theories, contrasted to religious ethics and then applied to the issues of abortion, euthanasia, animal testing and blood sports. The Philosophy course entails a study of arguments for and against the existence of God, evil and suffering, miracles and the afterlife.